What to Consider When Buying Washington State Foreclosures

One of the main ways America’s housing crisis is so painfully apparent is by the staggering number of abandoned properties visible in once-thriving communities all over the United States. For sale signs and foreclosure notices can be seen all around you, and now, more than ever, hard-working Americans live in fear of losing their homes. Because of the current economic crisis Americans from all walks of life are now facing, buying foreclosed properties may seem like the only viable option. If you live in Washington State, and feel that buying foreclosed property is your only option, there are some things you should consider before buying Washington state foreclosures.

Buyer Beware

U.S. News and World Report published an article online warning potential buyers of the problems associated with buying foreclosed properties. Buying Washington state foreclosures is a very involved, complex process, presenting buyers with the possibility of making some very costly mistakes.

  1. Even the most experienced homebuyer should avoid buying a foreclosed property without an experienced real estate agent. The complex transactions involved with buying foreclosures require the expertise of a highly trained and experienced real estate agent who knows the intricacies of purchasing foreclosed properties in the state of Washington. If you are looking into buying a foreclosed property, seek out an agent who has bought and sold foreclosed properties in Washington and has been through market cycles. Unless you are a real estate expert yourself, you need the help of an agent who knows the market and knows how to protect your investment.
  2. Many buyers, understandably, don’t know the specifics of real estate law, which varies from state. An experienced Washington state real estate agent will not only specialize in real estate law but will be able to explain it to you in terms you can understand. When contracts are involved, one word, one sentence can break you. A real estate agent who knows the laws in Washington State will protect you from that “fine print” that most lay people cannot possibly understand. When a contract is signed, you have little recourse should you miss something or not understand what you signed. Combine the excitement and stress of buying a home with complex legal language, and crucial information may be overlooked.
  3. Be aware of the home’s need for repairs. Not many foreclosed homes are in perfect condition. While the “sticker” price may be attractive, be sure to factor in home improvements and necessary fixes to make the home livable.
  4. Set parameters for your search. In order to make the process manageable you must narrow down your search criteria including price, neighborhood, proximity to schools, stores, playgrounds, etc. Be specific about what kind of property you want so a deluge of listings does not come your way.
  5. Don’t assume banks will take any offer you make. The quickest way to end negotiations is to make a ridiculous offer. While banks may be eager to make the sale, they’re not going to entertain an offer that’s not even in the ballpark. Playing hardball, while in some cases may work, may just waste your time, the agent’s time and the bank’s time.

Family owned and operated since 1992, Sammamish Mortgage is a referral based Seattle mortgage company that has thrived on an impeccable reputation for taking care of homebuyers. Our integrity and commitment to excellence have allowed us to create and maintain longstanding relationships with lending partners to provide our customers the superior service they deserve. Whether you are looking for a first-time loan or to re-finance, you will find Sammamish Mortgage passes unrivaled pricing and interest rates on to you. Our Washington state clientele is the glue that holds us together and makes us the leader in mortgage solutions in the Pacific Northwest.

Please contact Sammamish Mortgage today for questions and concerns related to loans, interest rates, refinancing, market news and today’s rates.